Today I made it out to Southeast Cabinet Rescue to check out Clay Capp’s workshop and to talk with him about his work. Clay restored my mother’s kitchen cabinets and rebuilt her bathroom cabinets. They are beautiful! So I thought it would be great to get to know him better and talk about cabinetry and furniture and having burgers from Farmhaus.
Me: Are you originally from the Augusta area?
Clay: Oh yes, I was born and raised here. I grew up in Martinez and my wife, Kaitlyn, and I live in Grovetown. My parents are still in Martinez and my brothers are here too. My parents have brothers and sisters and they have kids. Lots of family and cousins. This is definitely home.
Me: Have you ever considered leaving Augusta?
Clay: I’ve traveled a little with a job I had. There are nice, interesting places all over, but this is home.
Me: Tell me about your work.
Clay: Well, at one point I worked for a company that did rope access to buildings and structures where you can’t get scaffolding or cranes or lifts. The training wasn’t bad, they put you on top of a warehouse, maybe 35-feet up, and taught you how to get into the harness, go over the side, manipulate the ropes, and move up and down. It was okay and there was a solid floor under my feet. Well, then it was time for my first job. We were 400 feet up on a grated catwalk you could see straight through! I couldn’t do it. It was okay because the one of the experienced guys said he couldn’t do his first job either. Ha ha! That was the job I traveled with. We went to lots of places. One job was in South Dakota in the winter. I like the south where it’s warm. And I like to stay on the ground.
I worked at Crawford Cabinets for about 8 years off and on. It was there that I learned how to refinish and build cabinets and furniture. I learned about the tools and how to use them and I learned about wood. I learned that I liked doing that.
I had a side job of hauling things. I hauled everything from landscaping debris to junk from a house. It’s amazing but I found a lot of furniture people just wanted to get rid of. I took it and restored it in my shop. I don’t do hauling anymore. I do have a booth at Uptown Marketplace where I sell the pieces I’ve restored and some I’ve built. Sometimes I sell on Facebook Market Place.
I have people call me to restore their cabinets and give their kitchens or bathrooms a facelift. And I have repeat customers who ask me to refinish a piece of furniture since they like what I did on a previous piece.
Me: So, what is your favorite activity to do in the Augusta area?
Clay: I like fishing on the lake. I’ve fished at other places like the brick ponds and the lock and dam, but the lake is my favorite. My friend has a boat, and we go out in the summer and catch bass. I like the water. I’d like my own boat some day!
Me: What is your favorite restaurant?
Clay: Well, I really like Doc’s Porchside. They have Redneck Egg Rolls that are really, really good. That’s my favorite and what I order all the time.
Me: What are Redneck Egg Rolls?
Clay: Oh man! They are like egg rolls with pimento cheese, pulled pork, collard greens inside. They’re fried and then they come with a spicy ranch dressing to dip in. I’m hungry just thinking about it!
Me: Do you have any hobbies?
Clay: I’m lucky that I like what I do because refinishing furniture and cabinets is my hobby. I’ve turned my hobby into a business! There is a lot of enjoyment in restoring the beauty the furniture once had.
Me: What is one thing on your bucket list you haven’t done yet?
Clay: I’ve always wanted to visit Hawaii. The pictures are beautiful, and I think it would be nice to visit a place so different from here. It’s tropical and exotic. And I’ve never flown over the ocean before. That would be neat.
Me: What is one of your long-term goals and how are you working toward it?
Clay: I’d like to have my business up and running to the point I can bring on people to work with me. I love what I do, and I’d like to teach others how to do it the way I was taught. Right now, I’m working on just getting my name out there. I do have my brother who helps when he can and when I need it. He’s a Columbia County Fire Fighter full time.
Me: What is one thing you’ve done that you are proud of, or glad that you did?
Clay: I’m glad I took the giant step to go out on my own to start my own business, Southeast Cabinet Rescue. It’s not easy. It can be a huge risk. I’m lucky to have the support and help I have from my family and clients. I look forward to growing and paying it forward.
Me: Name one thing that makes you unique, interesting, or special.
Clay: Wow. That’s a tough question! I guess, the one thing that makes me unique is my ability to always look on the bright side of things. Yeah, bad things happen, but once they happen, it’s done and in the past and you have to turn away from that and move forward. Even just one second after, just move forward. There is nothing worth getting upset about, just keep looking forward. That’s what I do.
Me: Thank you, Clay, for taking time to talk with me today. Your work is beautiful, and I know Southeast Cabinet Rescue will be successful. If you need to have cabinets refinished or repaired or furniture refinished or repaired, contact Clay. Or you can contact me and I will connect you to Clay.